Saturday, January 26, 2013

Sightseeing- Party of One

"You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover is yourself." — Alan Alda

Bundled for the 20 degree weather!
       So I've slowly come to the realization that this will be the trip of selfsies. I'm not kidding.
      This past week I've done so much sightseeing and became a lot more comfortable with the area. I would say the biggest adjustment has been doing all the sightseeing on my own. While groups of friends are walking by the Capitol taking fun pictures of each other.... there's Nicole taking a selfy with the Capitol in the background. Then I get through security and up to the visitor's entrance and the women goes, "How many passes do you need? Two?" ..... nope...just 1. And everyone from the tour group files into the the big theater for the movie at the beginning of our tour, and I look around...yup...only party of 1, here!

The Falls

      The freedom has been really nice, though. I was bored one afternoon this week, so I decided to drive to Great Falls National Park in Virginia for a few hours. It was FREEZING outside, so I bundled up in all my layers and brought my camera along. I had a great talk with the old park ranger about all the best places to visit in DC and about the history of the falls.  Since it was so freezing I didn't get to explore too far, but I can't wait to go back once it gets nicer outside. The roads on the way there would be beautiful in the Spring. So many trees and hills! Here's a few pictures from the Falls:

Along one of the hiking trails in the park


     On Wednesday of this week I rode the metro downtown and did the basic sightseeing. I explored Union Station first, which is the metro stop that I will be riding into everyday. It's GORGEOUS. All the buildings in DC are so grand and beautiful. Inside Union Stations there's basically an entire mall- Express, Victoria's Secret, Jamba Juice, and so much more. 
Union Station
   Union Station is only a few blocks away from the Capitol building, so I made my way towards the heart of DC. At first I was so taken aback by the security guards. I of course knew there would be high security all around the Capitol, but these guards stood with their HUGE guns out in their hands on every corner of the building. After going through airport-like security I was able to go in a tour the Capitol. It was awesome to go inside and walk through the places Obama was just walking through for the inauguration. After the Capitol, I made my way over the one of the buildings in the Library of Congress to look around for a bit. The insides of all the buildings were so nice. 
US Capitol
     Then, I made a quick stop in the Botanic Gardens before ending the day in the Smithsonian Air and Space museum, which was AWESOME. James would be in heaven if he went there!! I got to see the Wright Brother's first plane and learn more about their background. I definitely have plans to go back there because there was so much to see. 
     My internship starts on Monday, so I'm so ready to get started and have a set schedule. This has been the longest academic break of my life, and I'm ready to get back to being productive! I found out 3 other Mizzou students are interning at CNN this semester, so at least I'll recognize a few faces! So far I know I have orientation all day on Monday, then my boss signed me up for special training courses all day Tuesday. I'll definitely post about my first week on the job :) 
Rotunda of the Capitol
Ceiling in the Rotunda
Botanic Garden in DC- "The Jungle"

They have mini replicas of the major Washington buildings at the garden
Wright Brother's first plane

 And yes, I spared you all the many selfsies I took in front of all these places. 

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